Hi, people in government, whether at the federal or state or local level, here’s something I don’t want you to do: tell us to “repent” and join together in prayer. Ok? Thank you for your attention in this matter.
Governor Terry Branstad of Iowa has been doing just that to the citizens in his state and I think he should apologize and stop and apologize again. It’s none of his god damn business. Repent, governor, not in the churchy sense but in the secular sense. You’re a governor, not a priest. You live in a secular democracy, not a theocracy. It’s not your job to tell citizens to repent.
An official proclamation signed by Gov. Terry Branstad (R-IA) has called on Iowans to pray and repent on a daily basis.
In a public ceremony earlier this year, Branstad signed the proclamation ahead of a July 14 revival at the Iowa Capitol:
NOW, THEREFORE, I, Terry E Branstad, as Governor of the State of Iowa, do hereby invite all Iowans who choose to join in the thoughtful prayer and humble repentance according to II Chronicles 7:14 in favor of our state and nation to come together on July 14, 2014.
Well don’t. Don’t hereby invite. Do your own job, and don’t do more than your job. Don’t shove your benighted religious views on the citizens.
On Tuesday, Branstad was also one of the speakers at the 11-hour Christian event.
The governor explained that his proclamation “was very much in line with the great tradition” that started with President George Washington.
Branstad thanked the attendees for encouraging those who served in public office to “follow God’s will.”
Iowa Lt. Gov. Kim Reynold (R) also spoke, praising the crowd for “standing up for our rights, and for individual liberties.”
Except of course their rights to have a secular government.
If people really need the government to declare prayer time and advertise it, how strong can their faith be? Aren’t these the same conservatives who condemn the “Nanny State”?
Peter N says
Yeah, this makes me mad. In fact I made our governor’s stunt the centerpiece of a “sermon” I gave at the local Unitarian church a couple of weeks ago — their annual service in honor of World Humanist Day.
Want to know how he picked that particular day, July 14, to call on all Iowans to pray and repent? He got it from II Chronicles 7:14:
Too many Tick-Tock Men, not enough Harlequins.
This post inspired to take a brief look at the etymology of repent and to thereby discover google’s excellent etymology function that I hadn’t seen before.
Pliny the in Between says
Sounds like some pent up anger – perhaps repenting would help. Or would that be depenting? 😉
@Peter N, 2
Seriously? They’re using chapter and verse to determine dates now? That’s… kind of disturbing, actually. This might just be a conspiracy theory that I’ve internalised, but isn’t that how the date of the 7/7 bombings was decided?
Claire Ramsey says
infuriating and ignorant and total bullshit
none of his business.
Plus, what if it is god’s will to smite all governors who refuse to keep their mouths shut and to their goddamn jobs?
What do they do if some important verse is in a chapter number greater than 12?
chigau (違う) says
How did they know which Book to use?
Only the pent up need to repent.
Well-adjusted people don’t feel guilt over engaging in natural behaviours.